Michigan Estate Planning Lawyers

Not Your Typical Estate Planning Lawyer

You’ve worked hard to build your estate, now it’s time to protect it with a proper Michigan estate plan. While many people believe that estate planning is only for the wealthiest of families, having a plan of your own makes sense for all families and individuals, no matter the size of your estate. You’ve built it, now protect it.

At the Elder Care Firm, we pride ourselves on not being your typical estate planning lawyer who is only concerned about what happens if you pass away. Planning for where your stuff goes is actually pretty easy (though most estate planning lawyers screw it up).

The hard part is planning for what happens if you don’t pass away and continue to age. Then what? There won’t be an estate to pass on.

For this reason, we focus on more than just avoiding probate. Instead, our belief is that your estate plan should:
  • Provide Asset Protection during your life from lawsuits and nursing home costs
  • Protect your Retirement Accounts
  • Provide detailed disability instructions (what to do with you and your money if incapacitated)
  • Avoid Probate
  • Avoid Unnecessary taxes
  • Provide Asset Protection for your children and beneficiaries from creditors and divorces
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Asset Preservation and Protection

Many of the clients of The Elder Care Firm our interested in protecting their assets from unnecessary costs, probate, taxes and long-term care costs. Through proper planning using irrevocable and revocable trusts, you can maintain control while still protecting what you’ve earned to preserve your values.

Many times we are using asset protection trusts where you can change trustees, beneficiaries, control the investments, receive the income from the trust and empty the trust at anytime…while still being protected from law suits and long-term care costs.

Michigan Estate Planning

Estate Planning is an integral part of prudent financial management. Elements of a foundational estate plan may include drafting a will, which will make clear who should care for any minor children, how property should be distributed, and who will administer the estate. More sophisticated plans may include a variety of trusts and other tools that can help you accomplish all of the following goals and more:

  • Passing values, work ethic and a sense of responsibility to heirs
  • Significantly reducing income, estate, excise and gift taxes
  • Keeping financial affairs and family matters private
  • Making sure heirs are mature enough to handle a large inheritance on their own, and protecting that inheritance if they are not ready for the responsibility
  • Protecting heirs’ inheritances in the event of divorce and remarriage
  • Managing the value of business assets and interests
  • Ensuring a lasting legacy and impact on society

Attorney Christopher J. Berry recognizes that each client’s situation is unique and is experienced in utilizing the full range of estate planning tools and strategies. Contact us today for a consultation to discuss your particular needs and goals.

The Castle Trust as an Alternative to the Old Living Trust

Many of the clients of The Elder Care Firm our interested in protecting their assets from unnecessary costs, probate, taxes and long-term care costs. Through proper planning using irrevocable and revocable trusts, you can maintain control while still protecting what you’ve earned to preserve your values.

Many times we are using asset protection trusts where you can change trustees, beneficiaries, control the investments, receive the income from the trust and empty the trust at anytime…while still being protected from law suits and long-term care costs.

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Retirement Plan Trusts

Certified Elder Law Attorney Christopher J. Berry is one of the pioneers in Michigan of the Retirement Plan Trust.. Many times IRA and 401(k) accounts are a family’s largest asset, however most Michigan estate planning lawyers fail to properly plan for this asset due to the complex nature of income tax and required minimum distributions. Estate Planning attorney Christopher Berry has developed the Michigan Retirement Plan Trust as a way to enforce the stretch out provisions of the IRA while at the same time maintaining the asset protection many clients crave for their loved ones.

The Next Step for Your Estate Planning

The next step for your Michigan estate planning is to attend one of our LifeCare Planning workshops. Where we go over many of the concepts discussed on this page including avoiding probate, passing IRAs down to the next generation, protecting against long-term care costs and lawsuits.

Attend a Free Life Care Planning workshop

Register Now